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Loud music killing suspect compares self to rape victim

By Derek Kinner / Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 09:05 p.m. HST, Feb 18, 2014

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. » The Florida software designer accused of killing a black teenager during an argument over loud music compared himself to a rape victim, telling his fiancee in a recorded jailhouse phone call that the police were trying to blame him for the shooting when he was only defending himself.

In a series of taped phone calls and jailhouse visits released Tuesday by prosecutors, Michael Dunn also expressed surprise at the media attention his November 2012 shooting of 17-year-old Jordan Davis outside a Jacksonville convenience store had drawn and expressed confidence that he would be exonerated once a jury heard all the facts.

Dunn, 47, was convicted Saturday of three counts of attempted second-degree murder for shooting at three of Davis' friends who were all inside an SUV, but the jury hung on a first-degree murder charge for Davis' death. Dunn, who is white, has argued that he fired at Davis after the teen threatened him and raised a shotgun or something that looked like one after he asked the teens to turn down their rap music. No shotgun was found in the SUV.

Dunn is facing 60 years in prison when sentenced and State Attorney Angela Corey says she will retry him on the murder charge, which carries a potential life sentence. A phone message left for Dunn's attorney, Cory Strolla, was not immediately returned.

In a December 2012 phone call with his fiancee, Rhonda Rouer, Dunn compares himself to a rape victim, saying the detectives wanted to blame him for the shooting, not Davis and his friends. Inmates at the Duval County Jail are warned that all phone conversations and visits will be recorded and can be shared with prosecutors except for those with their attorneys.

"So not to wallow in, you know, despair or anything, but you know I was thinking a lot about this today and I was like I'm, I'm the victim here," Dunn told Rouer. "I was the one that was being preyed upon and I fought back.

"And then, you know, it's not quite the same, but it made me think of like the old TV shows and movies where, like, how police used to think when a chick got raped, 'Oh, it's her fault because of the way she was dressed.' Yeah, and I'm like, so it's my fault because I asked them to turn their music down," he said in a laughing voice. "I got attacked and I fought back because I don't want to be a victim and now I'm in trouble. I refuse to be a victim and now I'm incarcerated."

Dunn then told Rouer that he had no motive to shoot Davis other than self-defense. Apparently referencing his engagement to Rouer and his son's wedding, which he had attended right before the shooting, he said his life had been "perfect."

"On TV they always talk about motive. You know you've got to have motive, you've got to show motive. Well, what's my f------ motive?" he asked Rouer.

"I mean as I was trying to tell the police, I wouldn't do this at this point in my life. They're like, what's the matter, what's going on in your life, and I was like, it's perfect. My life is great and I would never do anything like this to jeopardize that."

"The more I think about it, I am just super confident that if they take this to trial it's going to be a short deliberation cause, you know, um, just because. I cannot imagine why those two boys (Davis' friends) are fibbing. So they are."

In another conversation with Rouer, Dunn expressed his frustration, saying, "I'm the victor, but I was the victim, too."

In an earlier conversation with his father, Phillip Dunn, shortly after the shooting, Michael Dunn seems surprised the case had gotten the attention of the Jacksonville and national media.

"Well, it's gone viral," Phillip Dunn said.

"In a good way or a bad way?" Michael Dunn asked.

"A bad way," his father said. "Shoots black kid over . loud music."

"I made it very clear to the police," Dunn said.

"Yeah, that it had nothing to do with it. We know what's going on," Phillip Dunn said.

Dunn indicated he understood his situation early.

"I'm hoping to be exonerated . it's either that or life," he said at one point.

"No, I don't think so . I think you're going to come out good," his father said.

"I sure hope so, Pop."

"You're a good person. I think pretty much anybody'd have done the same thing," Phillip Dunn said.

 Later in the conversation, Phillip Dunn reflected on his son's situation.

"What a shame. Here you had the world by the tail. All your bills were paid, you had 10 grand in the bank. Life was good. Your boy just got married. It's kind of a shame," Phillip Dunn said.

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nitpikker wrote:
the dad is as bad as the son. no remorse at all for the dead kid. too bad can't jail the dad too for bad parenting. something like 10 shots and he claims self-defense?? ridiculous!
on February 18,2014 | 08:22PM
lokela wrote:
Lock this guy up. Should have just walked away from the loud music Everyone would have gone their own way soon. He should have kept his mouth shut.
on February 19,2014 | 05:36AM
HanabataDays wrote:
Compared himself to a rape victim? Considering he's prison-bound, my Magic 8-Ball says the dude's got some mad psychic skilz.
on February 19,2014 | 05:43AM
krusha wrote:
That's what happens when you carry a gun in a car. Sooner or later you feel the need to use it. Unlike video games, you can't reboot this when things don't go as you planned and somebody's life is lost.
on February 19,2014 | 05:50AM
Bully wrote:
The loud music caused him to suffer from PTSD? He probably lived out his dream of blowing them away for blasting their annoying music.
on February 19,2014 | 07:04AM
wave1 wrote:
How many drinks did he have at the wedding? My understanding is there were many other parking spots, why not just move to an empty spot if you don't like the music? Or better yet, seeing you were all juiced up from the wedding, it would have been much better to dance with you female friend in the parking lot to the music- at least no one would have gotten hurt and you all would have had a good time. No need to kill people. Got aloha?
on February 19,2014 | 07:16AM
SteveToo wrote:
"State Attorney Angela Corey says she will retry him on the murder charge, which carries a potential life sentence." What a jer-k she is...The guys 47 years old w/a 60 year sentence. He'll be 107 when they let him out if he lives that long. Ms Corey is just looking to make a name for herself and spend State money.
on February 19,2014 | 07:34AM
wave1 wrote:
What if that were your son that was shot. Would you not want this man to at least be found guilty of the crime? The way it is now, one could argue maybe the young man was also guilty of inciting the agression.
on February 19,2014 | 09:36AM
2NDC wrote:
Dude made several mistakes. First one was not walking away from the problem and deciding to actively become part of the problem. Second was unlawfully using "deadly force". After firing upon the teens, he should have reported the incident if he did indeed believe his life was in danger. Instead, he hid out and tried to cover up the incident. Dude will serve the rest of his days behind bars. More likely than not guilt will get the best of him and he will end up offing himself while he's locked up. Either way, he'll never again be a free man.
on February 19,2014 | 07:55AM
bpet wrote:
This guy obviously has some 'reality' issues . . .he had the gun, he shot and killed an unarmed teenager for no other reason that he did not like the type or volume of the music being played. . .comparing himself to a rape vicim demeans and trivializes the trauma that rape victims go through . . .he will go to jail for the remainder of his life . . .going through another trial may appear superfluous, but he must be shown to be guilty of the charge of murder as well.
on February 19,2014 | 07:55AM
HD36 wrote:
You gotta have at least two 10" subs in your car and an amplifier. When they don't turn down their music, you turn up yours. If they come out of the car towards you, you have to see a gun pointed at you before you can pull your gun. It's a split second decision.
on February 19,2014 | 08:11AM
wave1 wrote:
Why don't you just move your car? It's only freakin music. A lot of more important things in life to be concerned about.
on February 19,2014 | 09:38AM
Upperkula wrote:
Should ask federal agent Deedy what should have been done in this incident.
on February 19,2014 | 09:02AM
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